There are many different ways a floor can be considered environmentally conscious. So to help you choose the best eco-friendly option for you and your home, I'm going to explain the 4 basic categories that Earth friendly floors can fall in.
|Carpet One International's Green Standard|
Floors that typically fall within this category have a small footprint, or effect on the environment.
- less resources are removed from our environment
- quickly renewable resources are utilized
- only natural products are use in the construction
Plus, many top manufacturers are looking for ways to decrease the environmental footprint of their facilities through various efforts such as increased energy efficiency, utilization of alternative energy sources, and offsetting carbon.
As our society's concern for the environment increases, so do the efforts of various flooring manufacturers to decrease the environmental footprint of their products. This is why the number of floors with recycled content is multiplying.
As an industry, we are...
- diverting more and more carpet from landfills
- collecting wood from unused buildings and re-purposing it into floors
- finding ways to re-purpose old products (vinyl tiles, plastic bottles, etc) into new floors
Highly Durable Flooring:
There are floors that are considered 'for life' floors because they are meant to outlast you (and possibly a generation or two of your descendants).
The use of these floors in your home reduces the use of resources because you don't have to replace them. These types of floors include...
- wool rugs and carpet
- natural stone tile
- ceramic and porcelain tile
This category includes floors and related products that make your environment in addition to the world's environment healthier. This could mean...
- minimal to no harmful emissions (VOC's) - many floors have been improved to meet emission standards including most carpets carpets, Amtico's luxury vinyl tile, and Marmoleum's natural linoleum - and don't forget to ask about the installation glue
- the conscientious use of safe chemicals only when necessary - most reputable flooring manufacturers have this mindset
- floors and related products that can improve air quality - carpet and area rugs act like air filters and the new Healthy Living Installation System is a great way to protect (and possibly improve) the air quality in your home
- the elimination of toxic or unhealthy materials (such as lead) - all reputable manufacturers have removed any known toxins from their floors